GOLDENDALE - A sunny fall day with crisp mountain air greeted the Bickleton High School cross country team at this past Tuesday's SCAC league meet in Goldendale.
Although the Pirates hail from a class 'B' school, the Bickleton runners fared well against their class 'A' SCAC counterparts.
"The course is run around Econe Park, which takes you up a large hill and down through a trail by a creek," said Bickleton Coach Darrell Lang. "The course is challenging, but most of the runners enjoy it as it is one large loop."
In assessing how his one lone girl on this year's team fared in Goldendale, Lang said the freshman Danielle Raschko brought home another "Top 10" finish. Raschko placed ninth Tuesday, clocking a time on the 3.1-mile course of 25:18. That was exactly five minutes back of the girls race winner, Alyssa Powers of Goldendale (20:18).
"Danielle continues to run strong on the girls side," said Lang. "For her first year she has displayed lots of poise and determination in running on all of these courses for the first time."
Of the six Bickleton boys who competed Tuesday against the likes of Goldendale, Lyle, Granger and Cle Elum, eighth grader Junior Hernandez was the top finisher. He garnered a third place finish, hitting the tape in 19 minutes flat.
"Junior continues to run like a seasoned veteran," said Lang. "Which should really help him as we are just one meet away from Districts, which is just over two weeks away."
Lang said the rest of his boys squad also turned in good performances Tuesday, "...and I know they are looking forward to cutting back on mileage and doing some late season speed work."
The rest of the Bickleton placers at the Goldendale race included Cody Loomis, 11th in 21:02; Tyler Jensen, 17th in 23:07; Orion Yoesle, 19th in 23:28; Jared Spalding, 23rd in 25:15; and James Rasmussen, 25th in 26:08.
Bickleton's cross country team is scheduled to compete next at a Valley 'A' meet in Zillah on Tuesday, Oct. 18. The District meet for class 'B' runners will be held the last weekend of October.